METUCHEN — The Middlesex County Office of Health Services reported yesterday that a bat tested positive for rabies in Metuchen, in the vicinity of Carson Avenue and Woodbridge Avenue.
This is the ninth rabid animal reported within Middlesex County for 2013 and the second reported in Metuchen.
The Animal Control Officer responded to a complaint that a bat was found inside a resident’s home. No animal or human bites, or exposures have been reported. The animal was sent to the New Jersey Department of Health Laboratory for testing. It was reported on Tuesday, July 16, that the animal tested positive for rabies. The Middlesex County Office of Health Services recommended that the home owner speak to their physician if they have additional questions.
The Middlesex County Office of Health Services continues to monitor rabies cases within the county. Residents should report wild animals showing signs of unusual behavior to their local Animal Control Officer. Additionally, it is recommended that residents should avoid contact with wild animals and immediately report any bites from wild or domestic animals to your local health department and consult a physician as soon as possible. Finally, be sure that all family pets are up to date on their rabies vaccinations and licenses.
Rabies is caused by a virus which can infect all warm-blooded mammals, including man. The rabies virus is found in the saliva of a rabid animal and is transmitted by a bite, or possibly by contamination of an open cut. New Jersey is enzootic for raccoon and bat variants of rabies. Bats, raccoons, skunks, groundhogs, foxes, cats, and dogs represent about 95% of animals diagnosed with rabies in the United States.
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